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A History of the Schenectady Patent in the Dutch and English Times
7: Adult Freeholders — Jan Barentse Wemp, alias Poest

Prof. Jonathan Pearson

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[This information is from pp. 223-224 of A History of the Schenectady Patent in the Dutch and English Times; being contributions toward a history of the lower Mohawk Valley by Jonathan Pearson, A. M. and others, edited by J. W. MacMurray, A. M., U. S. A. (Albany, NY: J. Munsell's Sons, Printers, 1883). It is in the Schenectady Collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at Schdy R 974.744 P36, and copies are also available for borrowing.]

[Copies of this book are available from the Schenectady County Historical Society.]

[The original version uses assorted typographical symbols to represent footnotes. To improve legibility, the online version uses the form (page number - note number.)]

He arrived in Beverwyck in 1643 or 1645, where he became a resident, owning from time to time several house lots in the village of Beverwyck, and parcels of land in Rensselaerswyck. His wife Maritie Myndertse, after his death about 1662, again married in 1663, Sweet Teunisse Van Velsen alias Van Westbrook. (223-1) Wemp had six children, three of whom were sons.

He purchased of Mad. Johanna De Laet, a bouwery in Lubberde's Landt [Troy], which after his death his legal representatives sold for 250 beavers to Pieterse Van Woggelum, whom Wemp's son, Myndert sued in 1675 for the fourth payment of 40 beavers. (223-2)

This bouwery was on the Poesten kil which probably received its name from his alias, Poest.

Nov. 12, 1662, Governor Stuyvesant granted the first patent for land at Schenectady to Jan Barentse Wemp and Jacques Cornelise Van Slyck. This grant was for the great island in the Mohawk, lying west of the village, called later Van Slyck's and sometimes Wemp's island, containing about 82 acres of the best land in the valley. (223-3) The description given in the patent is as follows, to wit: "the island till now named Marten's island, lying near Schenectady over against the town on the west side of the creek [Binnè kil] (224-1), in its entirety, notwithstanding there is a little creek running through it (224-2) comprising about [41] morgens."

In the confirmatory patent given April 13, 1667, by Governor Nicoll to Sweer Teunise Van Velsen (224-3), and Jaques Cornelise Van Slyck in quality of brother and heir of Marten Mourits;" it is described as "a certain island called Marten's island near Schenectady, over against the town containing [82] acres, first taking out six acres, or 3 morgens, on said island the title to which was vested in said Theunissen, who married the widow of Jan Barentse Wemp to whom and the said Jacques Cornelise said island was granted Nov. 12, 1662, by Governor Stuyvesant." (224-4)

Wemp's village lot was on the west side of Washington, commencing on the north side of the lot of Charles Thompson and extending southward 166 feet more or less, and westward to the river. This lot was inherited by his son Myndert, who was killed in the massacre of 1690.


(223-1) See Ante-nuptial contract, Not. Paps., I, 435, 438.

(223-2) Albany Co. Rec., 456, 492; Proceed. of Magis., 1675-80, folio 7, Albany City Clerk's office.

(223-3) See Patent in Union College Library.

(224-1) [Binnè kil (inner creek), is the modern name given to this branch of the Mohawk river. — M'M.]

(224-2) The land thus separated from the greater island by this "little creek" was called later Varken's island. In 1693 Rodè, a Mohawk Indian, declared that about 30 years ago when Schenectady began to be settled, he and other Mohawk Indians granted to Marte Cornelise Van Slyck the island known as Varken's on the north side of Akus' island. — Col. MSS., XXXIX, 216.

(224-3) Van Velsen married Wemp's widow in 1663, and therefore took his place in the land grant.

(224-4) Patents, 357. This island was evidently at first owned by Jan Barentse Wemp and Marten Mourisse, brother of Jacques Cornelise Van Slyck, for Sept. 16, 1662, they hired Hendrick Arentse to labor on their bouwery at Schenectady, and Mourise must have died between that date and Nov. 12, 1662, the date of the patent in which Wemp and Jacques Van Slyck are joint owners, the latter in character as heir of his brother Marten. — Not. Pap., I, 74.

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